By Adam Thompson | | 6 mins
5 MLB Best Bets, Odds & Picks To Play With 2020 Schedule Set
The 2020 MLB season is going to be unlike any other in history. After a four-month delay to the start because of the coronavirus pandemic, action begins July 23 on a frenetic 60-game regular season, followed by a full MLB playoffs schedule.
The MLB schedule was revealed on Monday. First pitch takes place on July 23 in the nation’s capital as the Washington Nationals kick off defense of their 2019 World Series title by hosting the New York Yankees. That is followed by an NL West showdown between the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers. All other teams open on July 24.
CHECK OUT: Ultimate 2020 MLB Betting Guide
Instead of a full travel schedule, MLB has condensed team slates into regional round-robins. For MLB betting purposes, each team plays divisional opponents 10 times apiece (40 games), and takes on teams from the opposite league’s corresponding division five times (20 games). Teams from the AL East match up with the NL East only for interleague games, and so on.
Bookies.com has broken down the MLB schedule. Here, it reveals its top five MLB futures bets for the unique 2020 MLB season.
|New York Yankees — Win AL Pennant||+175 |
Bet it at 888sport
|Atlanta Braves — Win NL East||+215 |
Bet it at 888sport
|Chicago White Sox — Win AL Central||+325 |
Bet it at bet365
| Los Angeles Dodgers|
— Win World Series
Bet it at DraftKings
|Cincinnati Reds — Win NL Pennant||+1500 |
Bet it at SugarHouse
New York Yankees — Win AL Pennant (+175)
The Yankees won 103 games last year then lost in the postseason to the Houston Astros for the third time since 2015. But keep in mind New York suffered 3,150 days in lost action from players on the injured list — the most of a single team in baseball history. Fully healthy, the team may have competed for 120 wins.
Now they’re not only healthy, they stole the best pitcher in the game, Gerrit Cole, from their rival Astros. That move not only makes them more powerful, it makes Houston less so. There’s no team in the AL equipped to handle a fully healthy Yankees squad over a seven-game series. Take the Yankees at 888sport.
Atlanta Braves — Win NL East (+215)
In the National League it’s the Dodgers and then everyone else. But the National League East? That’s a battle worth wagering on. Four of the five teams in the division can stake a claim as contenders in the East, including the defending World Series champion Nationals.
But this is Atlanta’s division to lose this year. Consider that in 2019, the Braves were overly young and maddeningly inconsistent at times — and still won the NL East, finishing second only to the Dodgers in overall record in the NL, going 97-65.
The Phillies should compete, the Mets are likely a few players away from doing the same, and the Nationals are trending in the wrong direction. The Braves actually got better, adding four-time All-Star Cole Hamels and big bat Marcell Ozuna. They can beat the Dodgers, but let’s back them here to stay in front of Philly and Co. in the East. Take the Braves at 888sport.
Chicago White Sox — Win AL Central (+325)
The southsiders haven’t been realistic contenders to win anything in more than a decade. It’s been eight seasons since they even finished in the top two of the AL Central. But the Sox had a strong offseason.
Chicago added the best catcher on the market in Yasmani Grandal and one of the premier sluggers in Edwin Encarnacion. Chicago also re-signed Jose Abreu and traded for OF Nomar Maraza. Pitching was an issue, but the team added a pair of capable lefties in veteran Gio Gonzalez and former Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel. The Twins and Indians are ahead of the Sox on the table, but Chicago now has the horses to hang in the division. A hot start in a shortened season is all Chicago needs. Take the White Sox at bet365.
Los Angeles Dodgers — Win World Series (+375)
The Dodgers have reached the World Series twice in the last three years but came up painfully short each time. So they went out and added 2018 AL MVP Mookie Betts to add to a team that is full of budding stars.
L.A. is the massive favorite to win the NL West again. In fact, the odds are too low on it to win the NL. The only potential value is in World Series betting and winning the whole thing.
With sub-25-year-old studs Cody Bellinger and Walker Buehler ready to take the next step, a motivated Clayton Kershaw nearing the end of a Hall of Fame career and Betts on board, it’s going to be tough to slow the Dodgers. The Yankees stand in the way, but that might be about it. L.A. hasn’t had the injury issues of the Bronx team. Bet the Dodgers at DraftKings.
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Cincinnati Reds — Win NL Pennant (+1500)
OK so I just took the Dodgers to win the World Series. Now here’s a pick for the Reds to pass them and win the pennant? Sounds nuts, but there’s value in this one.
First, Cincy is trending in the right direction. The Reds are coming off their best season since 2013. They had a great off-season by adding big-time bats Mike Moustakas and Nick Castellanos and finding a new leadoff hitter in all-around talent Shogo Akiyama.
Second, Cincinnati's pitching staff isn’t deep but it’s strong at the top. That isn’t a great thing to be in this truncated 2020 season — rotation depth will be critical as starters go fewer innings early on. But if this team can stay healthy and get into the playoffs, the frontline rotation of Luis Castillo, Trevor Bauer and Sonny Gray is top-shelf. The NL Central is going to be balanced, and thus winnable. The Reds have the offense and the frontline rotation to shock the world. Take the Reds at SugarHouse.